Saturday, October 29, 2011

Those Magnificent Men in Their Flying Machines

A fascination with flight!  The history of man is filled with it.  Who hasn't had that dream of being able to fly like a bird, over the tree tops, surveying below a miniaturized world?

Brian and I walked through the dream of flight last Saturday at the Evergreen Aviation and Space Museum in McMinnville, Oregon.  It is a remarkable collection of man's earliest attempts, his most colossal attempts, and his most powerful attempts.

I can't believe this extraordinary collection exists so near us, and yet it has taken us this long to see it.  We enjoyed it a lot.  We marveled at the development that has taken place in a relatively short amount of time, much of it within our own lifetimes.

If you ever get the chance to see this, I highly recommend you take it.  There are two separate museums, one for Aviation and one for Space; there is an IMAX Theater with breathtaking movies, and there is even an indoor water park.  No kidding.  So next time, we're bringing our swimsuits.

Monday, October 24, 2011

If I Could Hie to Kolob!

Have you ever seen anything more beautiful?  This is not an artist's rendering.  It is not someone's active imagination.  This is the real deal.  This is a glimpse into the far reaches of our universe.

And it is stunning.

This is just one example of the images captured on the Hubble Telescope that has been in orbit for twenty years.  And I got a first hand look at the story behind this amazing tool, which has helped us take a glimpse into space.  On Saturday, Brian and I went to McMinnville, Oregon as our destination, not to simply drive through it on our way to somewhere else.

We went to the Evergreen Aviation and Space Museum, one of the highlights being the Hubble 3D movie which we saw in the IMAX Theater.  I know much of the impact came from being in that incredible environment of  intensified sight and sound, but I was mesmerized.  I was completely engaged, with all my senses awakened, including my spiritual eyes.  I knew as I watched evidence of stars being born that creation was being documented.  I literally saw matter being organized.

If you could hie to Kolob in the twinkling of an eye?
And then continue onward with that same speed to fly,
Do you think that you could ever, through all eternity,
Find out the generation where Gods began to be?

Or see the grand beginning, where space did not extend?
Or view the last creation, where Gods and matter end?
Methinks the Spirit whispers, "No man has found 'pure space,'
Nor seen the outside curtains, where nothing has a place."

The works of God continue, and worlds and lives abound;
Improvement and progression have one eternal round.
There is no end to matter; there is no end to space;
There is no end to spirit; there is no end to race.

There is no end........

 I feel so humbled to be part of the creation portfolio of a loving Father in Heaven.  I couldn't stop thinking about how, amidst all of this splendor, God values and loves me, and counts me as His child.

We're part of something great here.

William. W. Phelps 1792-1872

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

I Want to Be a Finisher!

Are you a finisher?  I didn't ask if you were a starter; I guess that is a topic for another day.  Right now, I am fascinated with the idea of being a finisher.  I have never lacked for ideas of things to begin.  I love imagining all the projects that I might do, yet I am also the first to admit that sometimes I struggle with finishing all the things I set out for with great intentions.

I am presently faced with a monumental task that might give way to my losing interest, but I am determined to not let my deficient attention win this time.  Just because the fun part is over, I MUST keep wading through the less-than-interesting details.

I am fine-tuning the manuscript of my book preparing it for publication.  I am aligning the formatting with the publisher's requirements.  I am editing footnotes.  I am preparing the reference list to submit for a copyright permissions request.  So. Much. To. Do.  Literally.

I don't know why I thought all these things would be magically done by someone else.  Naivete', I'm sure.  It all falls upon me.  It isn't very glamorous, or very fun, or very exciting.  But it is advancing the progress of my book.  That is exciting.  That is what I need to focus on.  Each step of the journey is important.  Every detail counts. 

I'm getting a glimpse at what real editorial work is like.  I'm certain I prefer the creative side more, but they go hand-in-hand.  One can't exist without the other.  This is what separates the men from the boys.  This is what separates the authors from the wannabes.

I want to see this through to the end.  I want to endure the process.  I want to dot all the i's and cross all the t's.  I want to be a finisher.

I am a great starter.

Now is the time to be a finisher.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Dream Until Your Dream Comes True

I knew it would be great.  I suspected it would be very fun.  I imagined what it would be like with my entire family dressed in costume, reuniting with Miranda, wandering the streets of the Magic Kingdom with trick-or-treat bags at Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party.

Oh. My. Stars.

It was outrageous.  It may have been one of the craziest, funnest, most memorable nights of my life.

The fun had begun with the planning.  As the mother, it once was my responsibility to plan everyone's costume for Halloween.  Now that my children are all adults, I am merely a facilitator, helping them pull together their own ideas.  I trusted that they would each have a great concept.  They did.  Some let me in on their plans; some chose to make an entrance with surprise on their side.
Some attracted a lot of attention. 
Some had little boys coming up and wanting to feel their muscles.
Some had little girls coming up thinking she was a real princess.  (Really? C'mon, really? It must have been too dark for them to see the wrinkles...)

My only regret was that my energy drained out long before the party was over.  Grumpy and I had to resign ourselves to a bench in front of the castle, watching as all the merrymaking went on around us.

It was extravagant.  It was an extra expense, requiring extra planning and packing to bring costumes in our suitcases.  Was it worth it?

Every penny.

Dream on, dream on, dream on.  Dream until your dreams come true.....